Powerlifting is a strength sport that doesn’t seem to get as much praise as other fitness spaces such as Bodybuilding or Olympic Weightlifting. For instance, bodybuilders are known to have the sexy aesthetics which people admire. On the contrary, most powerlifters are known to have strong, but slightly bulky physiques, which may not exactly be aesthetic for many. Well, it’s because they don’t care entirely for the aesthetics, but rather the strength.
Simply speaking, powerlifting is all about increasing the amount of weight you can move on the barbell and getting stronger and stronger than ever before. It’s about putting in all the hard work and determination to improve your main lifts. It’s the relentless pursuit of strength!
If you have a powerlifter friend in your life, or are one yourself, you would know how hard powerlifters have to work to reach their goals. The least you can do is show appreciation for their hard work and help them in their journey, right? Below are 15 thoughtful gift ideas for the well-deserving powerlifters in your life – let’s do some shopping!
1.) Inzer Powerlifting Belt
Just as a doctor needs his stethoscope at all times, an accountant his calculator, and a sailor his compass, powerlifters’ most important training tool is their powerlifting belt. It is what it is, a great asset.
Powerlifting belts are slightly different from the usual lifting belt, in that they are usually much thicker and sturdier throughout, and have a lever locking system in place like in the picture above. Inzer is one of the leading makers of such belts, and you can get quickly one at an affordable price on Amazon.
Any powerlifter would jump in delight if he/she gets a brand new powerlifting belt as a gift. So you can’t go wrong with this one!
2.) Starting Strength Book
Books make for great gifts. It’s the most thoughtful a gift can get. And for powerlifters, or for people just getting into powerlifting, there’s no better book than Starting Strength – Basic Barbell Training by strength coach Mark Rippetoe.
The book covers the technical aspects of strength training and the big barbell lifts, topped with Rippetoe’s classic witty humor. It is so complete and comprehensive as it includes proper form, technique, tips, illustrations, and much more.
This book is considered the Bible for strength training and powerlifting. It’s the best one out there. There’s always room for learning and improvement, and this book will help any powerlifter refine his/her technique to succeed even further.
3.) 5/3/1 Program Guide Book
There are several strength training programs out there. For beginners, there’s Starting Strength and Stronglifts 5×5. For intermediate lifters, the most famous and effective one is 5/3/1 by Jim Wendler.
The program helps intermediate to advanced powerlifters break through plateaus by using strategic percentages and rep ranges, and ensures slow, but continuous healthy progress.
The 5/3/1 program guidebook written by Jim Wendler, the man himself, covers everything about the 5/3/1 program and is a great gift to anyone looking to change things up in their training routine. It’s a high-quality book, and definitely a good investment for your training!
4.) Powerlifting Singlet Suit
These powerlifting singlet suits offer compression to the body that helps in lifting more weight and protecting the joints as well, especially in the Squat. Many powerlifters wear suits as part of their training or in some cases as part of competition when attempting maximal loads.
Singlets are also useful in breaking through plateaus. Moreover, they keep your form stable and keep you injury free when performing the big lifts. These suits also improve the velocity and rhythm of your lifts. Inzer makes one of the best suits and you can’t go wrong with a pair of them!
5.) Fractional Plates
Fifth on the list is fractional plates, also known as microplates. Fractional plates are smaller plates weighing 1.25lbs or less that enable you to work in smaller increments to your big lifts.
When it becomes hard to increase 5lbs at a time, microplates come in really handy as they help you get stronger one pound at a time. This is useful for breaking plateaus in lifts like the overhead press and bench press where a 5lbs increment seems too much. Fractional plates ensure slow but steady progress.
Shockingly, these aren’t that easy to find in your local sports stores since a lot of them don’t carry it. The best way is to get them online – you can buy them on Amazon for a few bucks a pair!
6.) Powerlifting Shoes
If books make great gifts, shoes make even better gifts. Who doesn’t love a nice pair of brand new shoes for Christmas?!
Powerlifting shoes or squat shoes have two things going for them. One, their sole is rock hard unlike running shoes. This helps stabilize the feet under heavy loads and helps you push harder during the squat. Second, the heel of the shoe is slightly elevated to give you a favorable ankle position which makes it easier to hit proper depth in the Squat.
If you’re serious about powerlifting and getting your big three lifts up, you need to invest in proper powerlifting shoes to help you in the cause. Yes, your chucks may do the job, but they’re far from optimal. That’s why companies go the extra mile to make such shoes. And that’s why the pros use them.
7.) Lifting Chalk
Another handy tool in any powerlifter’s toolbox is lifting chalk, especially if you have a weak grip or sweaty hands. Applying chalk on your hands helps you grip the barbell tighter so it’s useful in all barbell exercises, especially in deadlifts where grip strength is really put to the test. In fact, over time using chalk helps you get a stronger grip!
Lifting chalk is disposable of course, so you’ll run out of it eventually and can’t reuse it. This means it’s a safe gift since you can be sure that your powerlifter friend will make good use of it sooner or later! Oh, and it won’t dent your wallet at all.
8.) Barbell Clamps
This is one of those little things that make things much, much more convenient. Lifters who frequently train using barbell exercises use this special kind of barbell clamps as they’re much faster and easier to lock in and out of the barbell, compared to the standard barbell collars you find in most gyms.
You may have seen many powerlifters carrying around their own set of barbell clamps – because it’s just faster! Time is a valuable resource when it comes to workouts, and these barbell clamps help you save a lot. So if you feel like making someone’s life easier, then barbell clamps is the gift to go!
9.) Figure 8 Lifting Straps
If a powerlifter deadlifts (duh!), then he/she likely has or needs a pair of good lifting straps. Straps are used in deadlifts to tie the bar to your hands so that your grip strength won’t limit you from pulling heavy weight.
There are several kinds of lifting straps: standard lasso, Figure 8, single loop, etc. For powerlifting, Figure 8 style lifting straps tend to be the most favored since they’re easy to put on and tend to last longer as well. Also, they suit bigger beefier hands more than the standard lasso straps.
Lifting straps can be a handy gift to any powerlifter regardless if he/she owns one already. They will eventually degrade and a new one will be needed. So don’t look further than these Figure 8 lifting straps!
10.) Wrist Wraps
These bad boys belong to the same family as lifting straps, except they’re used for the bench press and overhead press (pushing lifts), unlike lifting straps which are used for pulling lifts (e.g. deadlifts, barbell rows).
As the name suggests, wrist wraps are meant to provide support to your wrists in order to create a strong foundation under heavy weight. If you have tiny wrists, wrist wraps will be of great help! A pair of wrist wraps isn’t that expensive at all, and they make for a great gift not only for powerlifters but also for bodybuilders.
11.) Powerlifting Knee Sleeves
While we’re at wearable gear, let’s not forget to mention knee sleeves. Similar to squat suits, knee sleeves provide compression to the knee to keep the knee joint stable during heavy lifts like the squat. These are vital gear to help prevent injuries during the squat and deadlift, especially for people with knee problems in the past.
Quality knee sleeves will also enable you to lift more weight in the Squat, so it’s certainly helpful in training. If you’re a powerlifter and receive high-quality knee sleeves as a gift, you’re definitely not complaining!
12.) Elbow Sleeves
Knees aren’t the only joints that need protection, elbows do too! If you’re observing the pattern close enough, you’d figure we will tell you that elbow sleeves are useful for the bench press and overhead press (pushing movements).
When you start pressing weights that your joints can barely handle, the elbows start to take a beating which manifests itself in tendonitis or swelling of the ligaments in the elbow. Elbow injuries take a lot of time to heal and can be troublesome, just like the dreaded tennis elbow.
So safety first always. If you’re dealing with heavyweights that stretch the limits of your genetic muscular capability, make sure you equip yourself with elbow sleeves. This one is a great gift for the avid bench pressers in your life!
13.) Wireless Headphones
This one is on the safe, chill, and versatile side of the gift spectrum.
We’ll tell you this: Powerlifters are always pushing themselves under the barbell, and they’re only human so they need motivation too! Music has been the secret to many successful PR (Personal Records), there’s no doubt about that. So wireless headphones for the gym make for a very thoughtful gift.
Also, practically all powerlifters, a few eccentric ones aside, use headphones during training. Why not gift them a pair of wireless headphones/earbuds to keep them motivated? Oh, the emphasis here is on wireless, you don’t want the long wires to get tangled up with the barbell. You have heavier problems to take care of as a powerlifter.
14.) Whey Protein
If you’re looking for something bulkier, a tub of whey protein is the way to go. Powerlifters eat a lot of calories and protein to maintain and improve their strength levels. Protein intake is an integral part of strength training. For powerlifters, it is gold and they will do anything to mine for it.
So why not save your powerlifting buddy a few months of protein expenditure by gifting them a big tub of it? They will appreciate it.
15.) 1000-Club T-shirt
Finally, we’ve saved the best one for last. The 1000lb squat-bench-deadlift total club shirt!
For starters, 1000-club refers to when the 1 rep max weight of your three big lifts, squat, bench press, and deadlift, add up to 1000lbs or more. For example, if you can squat 400lbs, bench press 300lbs, and deadlift 500lbs for 1 rep, your powerlifting total is 1200lbs – so you’re in the 1000-club!
This is seen as an important milestone for any powerlifter. All novice powerlifters aspire to reach this 1000-club one day. So this shirt enables you to exercise your bragging rights – you earned it, remember!
And that’s it! Hopefully you found something on this list to gift the powerlifters in your life. And if you haven’t, feel free to go back and take a look, or bookmark this page for later use!